Hollandaise Heaven

I love Hollandaise.  This is the sauce that absolutely makes Eggs Benedict the gourmet treat that it is.  This is a creamy, silky, luxuriously decadent sauce.  Hollandaise is great on fish, chicken, eggs, and vegetables.  If you have never tried to make your own, you are missing out!  I know a lot of people are afraid to make this delicate sauce, it can “break” (separate) if not handled with a little tender loving care and patience when making.  This is one of five culinary “mother sauces” and a great add to ones cooking repertoire.  This particular recipe is from the great Alton Brown.  This is a great base recipe that you can make slight variations on to create a unique sauce that suits the cooking application you intend to use it for.

3 Egg Yolks

1 tsp. Water

1/4 tsp. sugar

12 Tbsp. (1 1/2 sticks) of butter cut into 12 cubes (be sure to use unsalted butter)

1/2 tsp. Kosher Salt

2 tsp. FRESHLY squeezed lemon juice, don’t even think about substituting the stuff out of a bottle on this one!!

a dash of cayenne pepper, or rosemary, dill, basil, parsley, thyme, or any other spice or herb that delights your senses

Make a baine-marie by placing a pyrex or other heat resistant mixing bowl (or smaller sauce pan) in the top of a sauce pan containing about 1 inch of water.  Heat to a low simmer, you do not want the water to boil.  This is a GENTLE cooking method, we are not aiming for scrambled eggs.  😉

Combine egg yolks and water in a mixing bowl and whisk for about 1-2 minutes.  The yolks should become a light yellow color.  Add the sugar and whisk for another 30 seconds.

Pour into the warm pan over simmering water.  Whisk for 3-5 minutes or until the sauce coats the back of a spoon.  Remove from heat and gradually add cold butter one Tbsp. at a time until incorporated, whisking after each addition to melt the butter.  If needed you can occasionally return the sauce back over the simmering water to warm enough to melt the butter.

Add the salt, lemon juice and desired spices and herbs, stir to combine.  Serve immediately, or as Alton suggests, keep warm in a thermos until serving time.

Published in: on March 29, 2011 at 11:56 AM  Comments (5)  

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5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I am going to name you the sauce queen because you have amazing insight to a great sauce. I love this 🙂

  2. Haha! Thank you! I do love sauces, condiments, and gravies. They can take a good meal and turn it into something memorable. I made a blue cornmeal southern fried chicken last night with a pan milk gravy that was to die for yummy! The ultimate comfort food. 🙂

    • Oh My, that sounds delicious. I can’t wait to read more of your sauce recipes. I’m telling you, you’re the sauce queen. And you are right about a sauce or condiment, it can totally change the dish.

  3. I’ve always been reluctant to try Hollandaise as it takes patience (which you know I lack!!) I made it today, and I guess it should go without saying, use UNSALTED butter. I used SALTED butter as that was what I had in the fridge. Mistake #2, if you use SALTED butter, one should not add the kosher salt. Oh, well, I guess I’ll try it again (sometime!!) At least I did not add salt to the eggs benedict!!!!!!

  4. Ack!! Your right! I should have clarified that in the recipe. I only use salted butter when I am smearing it on toast, so I don’t think about the salted VS. unsalted in recipes. Thank you for saying something! I will be more aware of this point in the future. (I will also edit the recipe for anyone else who ventures down Hollandaise lane).

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